The Ames Community School District is seeking voter approval of a proposed Revenue Purpose Statement (RPS) that describes how the District will utilize funds made available through the Iowa Legislature’s extension of the Secure an Advanced Vision for Education (SAVE) Fund, commonly referred to as the one-cent sales tax. The District’s current RPS expires on 1/1/2031.
Approving the proposed RPS will allow the District to continue using future SAVE funds for school infrastructure through the calendar year 2050 when the SAVE law expires. It will not change the current sales tax rate. Citizens will continue to pay the one-cent sales tax even if the proposed RPS is not approved.
When to Vote: March 3, 2020
More information can be found on the Story County Auditors Website
In May 2019, HF 546 was signed into law extending the Secure an Advanced Vision for Education (SAVE) law through the calendar year 2050. SAVE allows school districts to borrow against statewide penny sales tax revenue to help fund school infrastructure projects.
On December 9, 2019, the Ames School Board of Education passed a resolution to call an election on March 3, 2020, to include the question of adopting a new RPS. Approval of the new RPS will not affect the sales tax rate. Rather, adoption of the proposed RPS will allow the Ames CSD to use SAVE funds to support current facility needs and to provide funding for future building needs per the District’s long-range facility plan for the full term of the SAVE authorization.
What are SAVE Funds used for in the district?
The Secure an Advanced Vision for Education (SAVE) Fund is a statewide tax that provides funding to specifically support school infrastructure and technology needs.
Since 2011, the SAVE Fund has funded approximately $91 million for key infrastructure projects in the district, including:
- Ames High School and Swimming Pool
- Elementary Expansions and Renovations
- 1:1 Classroom Technology
What will the approval of this measure allow?
In order to complete large capital projects in a timely manner, the district often utilizes low-interest borrowing strategies to utilize future SAVE funds today. In order to use SAVE funds for school infrastructure projects beyond the sunset of their current Revenue Purpose Statements, districts must have a new Revenue Purpose Statement approved by voters outlining how the SAVE funds may be used.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What is a Revenue Purpose Statement?
It gives Ames Schools permission to use penny sales tax (SAVE) funds for infrastructure & technology needs through 2050.
Why is a special election being held on March 3?
The school board is asking voters to approve an updated RPS. A simple majority vote of 50% +1 is required for its approval.
Will a YES vote raise my taxes?
No, this ballot measure will not raise taxes. Approval of the RPS would simply allow the district to use future SAVE funds.
Is this a vote to increase the statewide penny sales tax?
No, state legislators set the rate at one cent.
Where can I vote on Tuesday, March 3?
There will be seven (7) vote centers available. Any registered voter within the Ames Community School District who is eligible to vote at the regular school election may vote at one of the following locations:
- Ames Public Library Auditorium 515 Douglas Ave.
- Grand Avenue Baptist Church 612 24th St.
- Bethesda Lutheran Church 1517 Northwestern Ave.
- Ascension Lutheran Church 2400 Bloomington Road
- Perfect Games 1320 Dickinson Ave.
- Collegiate Presbyterian Church 159 Sheldon Ave.
- Trinity Christian Reformed Church 3626 Ontario Street